Report: DeMint, Jim Jordan nix McConnell’s debt-ceiling plan; Update: Dems are considering it, says Durbin

posted at 8:25 pm on July 12, 2011 by Allahpundit

DeMint’s opposition isn’t confirmed yet but Robert Costa of NRO has it on good authority. That might not be an insuperable obstacle to passage in the Senate given the fact, per Bret Baier below, that Reid seems open to the idea. If he can bring the Dems into line then all they’d need is the usual suspects — Brown, Snowe, Collins, Murkowski, and a few others — and they’re golden.

But Jordan’s kiss of death in the House will make things hard for Boehner:

Rep. Jim Jordan (R., Ohio), chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee, tells NRO that while he hasn’t review all the details of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R., Ky.) “contingency plan,” he doesn’t see much of a future for it in the House.

The RSC has 175 members. If all or most walk away, Boehner would need practically the entire Democratic caucus plus 50-60 Republicans who are willing to break with conservatives and lock arms with the left in the name of ceding control of the debt ceiling to Obama. They’d be doing it in the name of averting a default and boxing in The One as the candidate of debt next year, but I doubt that’d save them from primary challenges. How does Boehner get McConnell’s bill through the House under those circumstances? No wonder he seems so noncommittal about it; watch his reaction when Baier presses him on it at 1:30 of the clip below.

The key here, as is increasingly the case, might be Cantor. Whether there’s a rift between him and Boehner or not, he’s banked enough conservative cred by holding the line on taxes throughout the negotiation that he might be able to pry away some RSC members if he backed McConnell’s plan. Has anyone heard his reaction to it yet? If so, please tip us and I’ll update the post. I’ll leave you with a link to this brief but must-see vid (via NRO), which contains what must be one of the most ominous pauses in modern political history. No wonder McConnell’s thinking about Plan B.


Update: The Senate might be ready to play ball:

A back-up plan proposed by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell that would keep the U.S. government from defaulting on its debts next month is viable and under consideration by Senate Democrats, according to Sen. Dick Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the chamber.

“We’re talking about it as one of the options, yes,” Durbin said in response to a question about whether the McConnell plan is viable.

Update: Still no word on Cantor vis-a-vis McConnell’s plan, but this quote from earlier today speaks volumes:

Across the Capitol, a closed-door caucus of House Republicans broke up with the leadership conceding that it’s frankly at a loss about getting the votes before Treasury’s Aug. 2 deadline.

“Nothing can get through the House right now,” Cantor said after the White House meeting. “Nothing.”

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This makes no sense. Obama will raise the debt and cut nothing. At least by caving on taxes, we could get some spending cuts.

What will happen in 2012 is Obama will still be pressing for tax revenue increases from corporate jets and oil companies and evil rich white men. We’ll be right back where we are now except with another $2T of debt.

It pains me how gullible some of you are.

angryed on July 12, 2011 at 9:30 PM

Huh? Lost me somewhere around caving on taxes….

Handing Obama the means to finish us off, whether it is by raising taxes more or giving him the ability to raise the debt limit by himself is still a circular argument. We still end up handing him the means to finish us off!

bluemarlin on July 12, 2011 at 9:37 PM

I forgot to add, we all weren’t on the internet mass communicating…..1995, that was then this is now.

Dr Evil on July 12, 2011 at 9:37 PM

I like the idea, but the cuts part has to have a more solid requirement that the cuts are actually real cuts.

I would require that before Obama can sign it, it has to be sent through the OMB to be graded for whether his proposed tax cuts are valid, if they deem the cuts to be real cuts, and not just vapor, then Obama Signs it, and Congress gets to approve it, or not. I would also make the penalty for failure of the house/senate to approve it be half of the value. Instead of $700B to $600B, it would be $700B to $350B.

Thus, if Obama does not make cuts, he will be back begging congress for another increase in the debt ceiling.

astonerii on July 12, 2011 at 9:39 PM

An overwhelming majority of the electorate, some 2/3rds of it, oppose a debt limit increase and almost by the same number want significant government spending reductions. Wake up, you geniuses in Washington. Do what the people want, as shown by their votes last November, and you will still have your jobs. Do it not, and you can join the almost 20% of our people who have no jobs.

Get some cojones, for goodness sake. You don’t, you will destroy the GOP, give rise to a new party, and guarantee Obama another term. Nobody wants that, of course, but any cave at all on your part will make that happen.

If you care about your country and your children and their children, be a patriot, for once in your life.

TXUS on July 12, 2011 at 9:40 PM

The Golden Ticket for anyone running for President against Obowma.

It proves he is lying, and using scare tactics against seniors and our brave Military…

… The first one to use, again, and again, and again, and again, and again will walk into the White House.

Use his own mouth against him and pound him into dust…!

Seven Percent Solution on July 12, 2011 at 9:32 PM

Americans are stumbling over Golden Tickets all day long. It’s hard to avoid them. The freaking things are everywhere. Heck, the GOP could hold baskets outside their office windows cause the things are falling like manna from heaven. But will they?
No, no… no they all are waiting for someone else to do it. The leadership is just waiting. Waiting for the primaries maybe. Waiting for some Democrats to join their side maybe. Waiting for Obama to see the light of day maybe. Waiting for him to say he’s sorry. Waiting for him to lead. Maybe they’re just waiting for everything to be perfectly perfect. God, who knows.

JellyToast on July 12, 2011 at 9:49 PM

Looks like this is being whipped up to save Mitt Romney the painful decision. ALl the usual apologists for Mittens are supporting it. NRO, Hewitt.

promachus on July 12, 2011 at 9:49 PM

McConnell is a sniveling RINO. Cowardly Republicans have to weather a few popularity bumps in the road on the long trail to recovery. This is it. For the first time in history a socialistic fanatic has thrown down the gauntlet, challenging America’s future, not only as a world leader, but as a viable country period.

MaiDee on July 12, 2011 at 9:52 PM

This makes no sense. Obama will raise the debt and cut nothing. At least by caving on taxes, we could get some spending cuts.

What will happen in 2012 is Obama will still be pressing for tax revenue increases from corporate jets and oil companies and evil rich white men. We’ll be right back where we are now except with another $2T of debt.

It pains me how gullible some of you are.

angryed on July 12, 2011 at 9:30 PM

And he will be solely responsible for raising the debt ceiling throughout an election year. And he will be deprived of being able to blame the country’s shoddy economic performance on a default (a narrative the media will be more than happy to advance). So what, he’s going to do, call to raise taxes in a weak economy during an election year? Lol, doubtful. He can get away with that right now but it will not fly next year, particularly with blame for the economy drowning his campaign. Obama advocates for new taxes to pay down the deficit, our nominee says that hurts job creation and isn’t a plan to get people back to work. Forced to address unemployment, Obama then defaults to saying we need more infrastructure “investment”/spending to create “the jobs of the 21st century”… so, he’ll be forced into arguing that we need to raise taxes, not to pay off the deficit, but to enable more government spending. Geez, it would be teed up for our nominee. How’s that hopey-changey stimulus stuff working out? America, who do you trust more with your money? Job creators or Mr. Stimulus? He has no way out of this ideological trap.

Actually, he does have one– a national default that would allow him to scapegoat the GOP for the next year’s economic woes. He could simultaneously claim that he really wanted to a big deal to reduce deficits and that the GOP is to blame for the current state of the economy. The media will merrily advance the narrative, and it could pose a lethal threat to our 2012 chances. Republicans should first and foremost not do anything stupid that could allow Obama to shift blame for the economy to a national default. He will be gone in 2013, as will enough of the 23 Dems up for re-election to give us control of the Senate. Then we can get REAL spending cuts and entitlement reform via budget reconciliation. This is about strategy; I think you’re gullible if you think we can get any meaningful cuts out of Obama when he is actively pursuing a default.

Lawdawg86 on July 12, 2011 at 9:58 PM

The questions is, did McConnell and the G.O.P. Elite not learn anything at all from the Mid-term Elections?

kingsjester on July 12, 2011 at 10:09 PM

The GOP leadership, these old timers are fine with fighting the old fights. They long for the days when they could just argue and debate over the level of a tax increase, or just a certain tax or no certain tax. They crave those old friendly arguments over things that weren’t too overly important. Or the few things that mattered a lot but not really too much in the overall scheme of things.
But all this other stuff, it’s crashing their party a bit. It’s not like the old days. It’s like the commies they always said they detested from a distance have actually arrived at the gates and they don’t know what to do. It wasn’t suppose to be like this. The devil they always said they hated and never feared was suppose to always stay safely away.
It was always so much easier to be freedom loving when there really weren’t any serious threats to your freedom. It was always so much easier to proclaim your patriotism when nobody nearby was actually threatening it. But here they are, the Marxist monster has actually come out of the closet and is standing over them on top of their beds with his hammer and is ready and willing rip them to pieces… and they are horrified and confused and desperately just want it to go back into the closet. The don’t want to fight it! their true colors are showing and how much so do they wish those voices that keep encouraging them to stand up and fight would just shut up and go away!

JellyToast on July 12, 2011 at 10:11 PM

People need to remember that the spending cuts that are being bragged about by the Dems include a whopping $2 billion dollars in cuts for 2011 and 2012. That is as far as they are commiting to cuts.

Oleta on July 12, 2011 at 10:19 PM

DeMint is our strongest elected conservative leader at this time. We have to follow his lead. DD

Darvin Dowdy on July 12, 2011 at 10:30 PM

DeMint is our strongest elected conservative leader at this time. We have to follow his lead. DD

Darvin Dowdy on July 12, 2011 at 10:30 PM

Him, Rand Paul, and Mike Lee.

The conservative trifecta.

AUH2O on July 12, 2011 at 10:35 PM

greece, italy, spain, portugal and ireland are in the process of destroying themselves because they could not stop spending on social programs.

we have a chance to save ourselves..cut up the governements credit card by NOT raising the debt limit, sell off as many assets as we can stand and limit our spending while cutting ALL tax rates..personal and corporate.

i’ll personally be satisifed with nothing less.

DrW on July 12, 2011 at 10:39 PM

He will be gone in 2013, as will enough of the 23 Dems up for re-election to give us control of the Senate. Then we can get REAL spending cuts and entitlement reform via budget reconciliation. This is about strategy; I think you’re gullible if you think we can get any meaningful cuts out of Obama when he is actively pursuing a default.

Lawdawg86 on July 12, 2011 at 9:58 PM

I’m with you, Lawdawg. This isn’t about a RINO popularity contest as some comments are claiming. Obama doesn’t give two shites what happens to this country economically–all he cares is that whatever does happen, he can hang it on the necks of the Republicans so he can get another four year in which to destroy what’s left of this country. That is what we’re playing for here, a super high-stakes game of pin the tail on the elephant. We’ll be doing well just to get the tail pinned where it belongs, on the donkey, get Obama out of the WH, get veto-proof control of the house, and majority control of the Senate. THEN we’ll be able to get something accomplished w respect to the debt, and Obamacare. Just avoiding new taxes, and getting the tail pinned on the donkey would be awesome. Although POTUS the Magnificent might yet surprise us with some new screw-up that will hand us more of what we really want.

smellthecoffee on July 12, 2011 at 10:48 PM

How about merging McConnell’s plan with the agreed-upon 1.7 trillion in cuts they were able to reach this weekend? The discussed deal was supposed to be dollar-for-dollar, but that can be the GOP give on this issue. We settle for 1.7 trillion in cuts instead of 2.4 trillion, and completely drop the 700 billion in tax increases that the Dems wanted to reach the magic $2.4 trillion mark. In return, Obama is authorized to raise the debt ceiling $2.4 trillion in three installments over the next year to meet the government’s current obligations– enough to fund the government through March 2013. Congress gets to avoid raising the debt ceiling during an election year– but Obama doesn’t. Congress will accept it and Obama will hate it as he will be the Congress’ sacrificial lamb, but he will not dare veto it.

Conservatives can declare some measure of victory from extracting 1.7 trillion in spending cuts while protecting defense spending and preventing tax hikes– all while only in control of one branch of Congress. And we avoid a national default that would allow Obama to scapegoat the weak economy on a do-nothing Congress and intransigent Republicans. He has laid a clever trap for us, he’s hoping for a default; this would be a way to turn the tables.

Lawdawg86 on July 12, 2011 at 10:52 PM

No debt ceiling extension OR debt ceiling increasing this way are equally disastrous. The credit agencies should take this …”strategy” as the strongest indication yet that there is no hope of reigning in US debt for the next 18 months. Combine that fact with the at-least 50/50 chance of another term for da Bams…well, we all know how Moody’s, et al, should act. THAT will lead to a financial reaction which our government literally can’t control. At least the after-affects of failing to increase the debt limit have a possibility for managed chaos.

johnny alpha on July 12, 2011 at 10:53 PM

Huge, huge mistake to think that Obama will necessarily be gone in 2013 if ONLY the Republicans don’t make fence-sitting voters angry by not challenging Obama now. The fence-sitting voter will get into the voting booth and decide “Let’s see I don’t like Obama too much, but I’ve got to go along with him as my leader. At least he’s not a coward.”

MaiDee on July 12, 2011 at 11:05 PM

People need to remember that the spending cuts that are being bragged about by the Dems include a whopping $2 billion dollars in cuts for 2011 and 2012. That is as far as they are commiting to cuts.

Oleta on July 12, 2011 at 10:19 PM

Which is as far as their power to control spending extends. They can’t hold future congresses to anything budget-wise. You must get the cuts now or it’s just more smoke up our backsides and kicking the can further down the road.

SKYFOX on July 13, 2011 at 6:11 AM

Which is as far as their power to control spending extends. They can’t hold future congresses to anything budget-wise. You must get the cuts now or it’s just more smoke up our backsides and kicking the can further down the road.

Why doesn’t EVERYONE bring this up anytime the ‘cuts’ are in the ‘future’. Future cuts are bulls*** and we all know it. The cuts have to be now, and structural.

kerncon on July 13, 2011 at 9:29 AM

Senate and House Representatives all it is time to represent. Just vote to pass the legislation, and let the president sign or VETO it.

Now is the time to finalize what the people want for U.S. not to compromise and force U.S. to Socialize.

MSGTAS on July 13, 2011 at 10:21 AM

These Reps couldn’t beat a blind man at chess. “Here’s my last ditch proposal, can I still play?” Why are they announcing last ditch proposals now?? MORONS.

leftnomore on July 14, 2011 at 9:45 PM

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